Sunday, March 16, 2008

Nasty Houses and Unbroken Colts

This has been an interesting Palm Sunday weekend. It has been busy in the extreme, and it has felt as though every moment has been planned out and scripted. I am ready for the weekend to be over, so I can slow down and breathe. Still, it has been a good weekend in many ways. First, much work was accomplished. Second, I got to go out for breakfast with hubby, which is always cheap fun. Third, we got to go to church for the first time in quite awhile, and finally, our friends came over to eat and play with us this afternoon and evening. So over all it was just too much fun.

The interesting part is how totally unrelated events seem to mesh, as you sit in church, and let the service wash over you. Yes, that's how I felt today. I was tired, and unaccustomed to being there. I had to go to the bathroom when we arrived, so I was the last person in the family to slip into the pew. I was sitting next to Hippie Boy, who happens to be fairly low maintenance. I knew I ought to insert myself into the midst, but it just felt so good to stay on the end, by myself, where no one was breathing my air. So I did, and nothing horrible happened. In fact, as I said, the service just washed over me in the most comforting way. I don't think I listened to more than a quarter of it. Small bits would fall on my ear, and I would begin to consider them. Time would pass, and I would find that I had missed a good deal as I let my thoughts meander. But still it seems I caught more than I could process in a week.

The text was appropriately about the triumphal entry. They read the words about the donkey and her colt, and as always, I thought about the strangeness of this text. Since I was a child, I have always thought it odd, that Jesus instructed his disciples to go and fetch these animals, with only the explanation, "The Master has need of them." I always pictured myself as the guy who owned them, wondering who was taking off with my livestock. It seems presumptuous. I know God owns the cattle on a thousand hills and all, but I would find it very challenging to let go of my animals with an explanation like that. And I always run through this mentally, every time I read or hear this passage. It's just this thing I can't let go of.

But today I got to thinking about that phrase, "The Master has need of them." How many times does the Master have need of something, and He prompts me to go and get it, but I feel so my explanation is just too weak. So I don't go and fetch it with authority. Instead, I hang back, all insecure, and convince myself I am being ridiculous. I convince myself that God has no need of that thing. I convince myself the thing itself is ridiculous, which is interesting in light of part of the sermon today. One small part anyhow, which is how I took it in today. The speaker was explaining in a scholarly sense, that the donkey was a lowly animal which might carry a lowly person, and an untried colt would be apt to not only make you look lowly, but also possibly foolish.

So maybe that is the crux of the problem. Maybe I am just afraid of looking lowly or foolish. God does seem so prone to asking me to do things that seem to make no earthly sense, and sending me in with what sound, to me, like weak explanations. And I just cringe with all manner of discomfort, because I suspect I know exactly how this will go. I will go looking for the thing tentatively, and when I find it I will offer up my explanation apologetically. Then I will go my way, lugging my awkward burden through crowded streets, while folks look on and scorn me for my foolishness. Things never go easily. I stumble and struggle, and sweat and puff. Smart, well groomed, rested people stare, and wonder why I do not put down my cumbersome load. And all the way I avert my eyes, and wish my burden away, because I am not so sure why the Master has need of this load, or why he would send someone so unsuited as me to fetch it for Him. If the way is long enough, I would generally even get angry and begin to resent my load, or worse, the Master Himself.

Knowing this about myself, I am surprised to still hear the echoes of, "The Master has need..." in my ears. I am so very bad at this fetching business. So what, you may ask, does the Master have need of? I can't say for sure, but I think it's a huge, filthy, run down, former drug house. I couldn't say I know beyond a doubt, but it has all the earmarks of one of these fetching missions. Absolutely nothing about it makes sense, and it will doubtless leave us sweating and puffing. Surely it will leave many well groomed and well rested, wise folk scratching their heads in puzzlement. I guess we will set out, and see if the donkey and her colt are where He says they will be, and if our explanation for making off with them is accepted.

Friday, March 14, 2008

How I Know...

...spring is coming.

  • Twenty six deer in the field this morning
  • Two huge, honking Canadian geese which flew low over the house this morning, scaring Baby LaLa out of her skin
  • A flock of robins and red wing blackbirds feeding in the yard
  • My back hall, full of mud

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Bible Meme

I popped over to check on what Parableman has been up to, and found I had actually been tagged with a meme, that I agree looks like more fun than much of anything else I should be doing right now. I'm not much for tagging, but you can play too and send me a comment so I can check out your answers.

1. What translation of the Bible do you like best?

I probably use the NKJV more than anything else.

2. Old or New Testament?

You have to choose?

3. Favorite Book of the Bible?

Probably Proverbs or James. Depending on whether I go with OT or NT.

4. Favorite Chapter?

Acts 27...I don't know, every time I read it I just shake my head and say, "Figures."

5. Favorite Verse?

Romans 8:18

6. Bible character you think you're most like?


7. One thing from the Bible that confuses you?

Works vs. grace especially in the OT.

8. Moses or Paul?

Probably Moses.

9. A teaching from the Bible that you struggle with or don't get?

Free will vs. God's sovereignty.

10. Coolest name in the Bible?


And by the way, Parableman, we may be up in your neck of the woods at the end of the month. We are coming up for the Sysco food show at the OnCenter. We always think of you when we are up that way.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

The Next Survivor Series

My sister emailed this to me and it gave me a chuckle. Maybe it will tickle your funny bone too.

  • Six married men will be dropped on an island with one car and 3 kids each for six weeks.
  • Each kid will play two sports and either take music or dance classes.
  • There is no fast food.
  • Each man must take care of his 3 kids; keep his assigned house clean, correct all homework, and complete science projects, cook, do laundry, and pay a list of 'pretend' bills with not enough money.
  • In addition, each man will have to budget in money for groceries each week.
  • Each man must remember the birthdays of all their friends and relatives, and send cards out on time.
  • Each man must also take each child to a doctor's appointment, a dentist appointment and a haircut appointment.
  • He must make one unscheduled and inconvenient visit per child to the Urgent Care.
  • He must also mak e cookies or cupcakes for a social function.
  • Each man will be responsible for decorating his own assigned house, planting flowers outside and keeping it presentable at all times.
  • The men will only have access to television when the kids are asleep and all chores are done.
  • The men must shave their legs, wear makeup daily, adorn himself with jewelry, wear <>uncomfortable yet stylish shoes, keep fingernails polished and eyebrows groomed.
  • During one of the six weeks, the men will have to endure severe abdominal cramps, back aches, and have extreme, unexplained mood swings but never once complain or slow down from other duties.
  • They must attend weekly school meetings, church, and find time at least once to spend the afternoon at the park or a s similar setting.
  • They will need to read a book each night and in the morning, feed them, dress them, brush their teeth and comb their hair by 7:00 am.
  • A test will be given at the end of the six weeks, and each father will be required to know all of the following information: each child's birthday, height, weight, shoe size, clothes size and doctor's name. Also the child's weight at birth, length, time of birth, and length of labor, each child's favorite color, middle name, favorite snack, favorite song, favorite drink, favorite toy, biggest fear and what they want to be when they grow up.
  • The kids vote them off the island based on performance. The last man wins only if...he still has enough energy to be intimate with his spouse at a moment's notice.
  • If the last man does win, he can play the game over and over and over again for the next 18-25 years eventually earning the right To be called Mother!
***I actually think my dear hubby would win, and I'd be voted off if I was a competitor. But plenty of my friends and acquaintances try to win this rat race!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

I Love Pajamas

I was chatting the other day with my good friend BJ, and she noted that she was still in her 'jammies. She said this like it was a bad thing, which for her, it apparently is. And although I find myself often in agreement with the wise and all knowing Betty Jo, I just am not this time. In fact, I responded by saying that I was still in mine too, and I said it with pride. Any day I can spend entirely in my PJs is a day well spent. I love pajamas, and have a nice assortment of them, in various fun styles and colors. I can be seen doing just about anything in them, and very comfortably I might add. Finding me in my night clothes is no indication of illness in the house, or of the time I rose this morning.

One of my heroes, Cindy Bodie, single mom to 39 children, speaks often of living in her pajamas. In her houseful of traumatized and edgy children, coming and going while Mom remains at home in her PJs is a sign that all is right with the world. She discusses the phenomenon of appearing nicely dressed, and sending one or more of her children into a tailspin, as they convince themselves she is planning her escape to an exotic location. Nothing short of putting on the grubby nightclothes will reassure them. I observe a similar vibe in our house.

Still, I have to admit that I have not attained the highest form of PJ freedom. I do not go out to Walmart in my 'jammies. I want to. I wish I were this mature...but I'm just not there yet. I have to at least drag on a pair of sweatpants, which I suppose might qualify if I actually slept in them. But there is always room for growth, so I might make it there someday.

As an important PJ aside, it is worth knowing that if you are a thrift store shopper, awesome 'jammies are to be found soon after Christmas, for pennies on the dollar. Lots of really fun, cozy PJ's get donated right after Christmas, many still bearing the store tags. I picked up about a dozen sets this year for the girls and me, and paid about $2-3 per set. Ah yes, and lest I forget, a set for Daddy, plus flannel pants for baby boy, and his favorite...a red and white striped nightshirt.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

No They Didn't....

....make it by the jammed up vehicles, if you were wondering. They got stuck too, and every vehicle on camp, including ours, was pressed into service as a shuttle. They shuttled kids all through the night. I am tired and bleary this morning from looking out my window into the wee hours, watching and hearing them go to and fro. But I am quite certain I am nowhere near as tired as all our guys who were out there all night, and are out there again this morning. I don't even consider the teens. They would have been up half the night anyhow!

Oh the joys of winter camping on the mountain!